Blocks to Listening

Being a good listener takes more than being attentive to your partner when he or she talks with you. Instead, the key to strong communication is knowing the characteristics of a poor listener.

The act of NOT listening is not exclusively a fault of men; women do it just as often. Below is a list of common blocks to effective listening:

  • Feelings of being right and your partner being wrong.
  • Insecurity about topics that creates defensiveness.
  • Silently resenting your pattern.
  • Silently or verbally criticizing what your partner is saying.
  • Being preoccupied with other issues.
  • Being impatient or not in the mood to talk.
  • Rehearsing what you will say while your partner is talking.
  • Jumping to hasty conclusions.
  • Dismissing what you hear.
  • Racing ahead of what your partner is saying.
  • The build up of strong emotions during a discussion.
  • A dislike for the subject.
  • Feeling misunderstood.

The key to effective communication is identifying when you are doing any of the roadblocks above and work to change it. Like all change, it requires practice, but it's possible as long as you are willing to make the effort.

© 2007

Other Relationship Issues, Books

Nancy Fagan is the best-selling author of 'The Complete Idiot's Guide to Romance' and 'Desirable Men: How to Find Them' has appeared on several hundred radio and television shows including Ricki Lake, Men are from Mars/Women are from Venus, ABC News, NBC News, CBS News, The Berman & Berman Show, FOX News. She has been featured in most major newspaper in the United States and worldwide as well as regularly mentioned in the nation's top magazines such as Ladies' Home Journal ('Can this Marriage be Saved?'), Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Men's Health, Bride's, Seventeen, Women's Day, Family Circle, Women's Own, BBW, Complete Women and dozens of others. To read more, visit This column is reprinted with permission from Send questions to E-Mail

Contact Us | Disclaimer | Privacy Statement
Menstuff® Directory
Menstuff® is a registered trademark of Gordon Clay
©1996-2019, Gordon Clay